The woman who took a heart-wrenching video of a duck boat as it slowly sank in Missouri’s Table Rock Lake Thursday night has opened up about what it was like witnessing such a horror take place.
Jennie Carr was on a nearby showboat, “Branson Belle,” when she noticed a pair of nearby boats getting into trouble during a severe storm.
Authorities have now confirmed that at least 17 people, including several children, perished in the tragic accident. Severe thunderstorms generating winds of up to 60 mph rolled through the local area yesterday, with the boat getting into trouble at around 7 p.m.
You can watch footage of the incident below:
WOW – video captures duck tour boat sinking in Missouri w/31 people on board. 11 people are dead, including children, 5 people are still missing in the lake and 7 are in the hospital. You can see there was terrible weather. A severe thunderstorm warning was issued 30 mins before. pic.twitter.com/w8T17pE37B
— Erica Rakow (@EricaRakow) July 20, 2018
As the video comes to an end, you can see the boat begins to sink, as the nose of the craft submerges beneath the heaving waves.
“It’s going under,” someone says, as a member of staff on the showboat can be heard desperately attempting to summon help.
“Crew! Anybody who can read me. I need a rope on the bow, and one on the starboard side,” he shouts.
The woman behind the camera, Jennie Carr, confirmed that many of the crew on her vessel attempted to save the fated passengers by preparing life jackets and heroically jumping into the raging waters.
“First, we really didn’t realize it had sunk. Then when all the crew started running and the captain was giving orders to all the crew to get the life vests and get out there and help them, then everybody cried,”she told TODAY.
“I went to the window, and I prayed and I cried,” Carr said, adding that she had never seen such massive waves on the lake.
“There was nothing you could do,” she said. “The crew did a really good job of trying to get everybody out that could get out.”
Among the brave rescuers was an off-duty sheriff’s deputy on the Branson Belle who “jumped in and helped,” according to Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader.
CNN reported that 14 of those stricken in the deadly waters were rescued as a result of the crew’s quick thinking and courageous actions. The storm came through with staggering power and whipped some ferocious torrents on the usually placid lake. Reports indicate that the weather was forecast.
“The waves were 6 feet tall,” explained Carr’s husband, Jeff. “For a lake, that’s pretty big.”
BREAKING: This is video of what the waves were like on Table Rock Lake in Missouri tonight when the duck boat capsized. Man in this video says, “Never quite seen it this bad. Boats can’t get in. Boats can’t get out.” (Credit: Lakeside Resort) pic.twitter.com/HxB8aY2u0a
— Mike Saccone (@mikesacconetv) July 20, 2018
Jim Patterson, president of Ripley Entertainment, which owns the duck boat tours in Branson, said that the company was currently gathering more information on what went wrong and why the boats were out there in the first place.
“It was a fast-moving storm that came out of basically nowhere is sort of the verbal analysis I’ve got,” Patterson told “CBS This Morning.”
But he admitted that the boat “shouldn’t have been in the water if what happened, happened.”
In a statement, Suzanne Smagala-Potts of Ride the Ducks Branson said the company was incredibly saddened by the accident.
“This incident has deeply affected all of us,” Smagala-Potts said, as reported by NBC News. “We will continue to do all we can to assist the families who were involved and the authorities as they continue with the search and rescue.”
“The safety of our guests and employees is our No. 1 priority,” she added.
Despite divers resuming a search for the four who still remained missing Friday morning, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson said it “doesn’t look very good for survival” at this point.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and the victims in this tragic event that’s occurred down here,” Parson added at a Friday press conference.
Among those killed was the driver, Robert “Bob” Williams, according to his widow, Judy.
“He’d talk to anybody. He made an effect on many lives. He would give up his life for somebody,” she told CNN.
“He was a God-fearing man; he was very humble,” Williams’ grandson, Victor Richardson, added. “He was the calmest spirit you could ever meet.”
The NTSB is due to travel to the popular vacation destiantion Friday to try and piece together what happened.
If you have video or photos of the July 19, amphibious vehicle accident on Table Rock Lake near Branson, MO, or if you witnessed the accident, please contact the NTSB via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
— NTSB_Newsroom (@NTSB_Newsroom) July 20, 2018
Life jackets were reportedly available on board the amphibious vehicle, but it is unclear whether or not they were used.
Please keep the families and love ones of those affected by this horrific accident in your prayers.